Social Art Practice
A War-Like People: Victims or Perpetrators?
An Invitational Group Exhibition
Monorchid Gallery, Phoenix
This earth & fired clay installation explores and re-examines the value & power of taking pledges. I have been asking fundamental questions about our American Pledge of Allegiance. As I dissect each word, themes of isolation and superiority emerge and I find much to ponder. Who are we pledging our allegiance to? Is the current pledge pertinent to our times – to our growth not only as a nation but as a member of a global society? Today the world is interconnected. We have responsibilities to one another and the environment. Over 150 ceramic hands (the stripes) & round tile (the stars) with images & words, contextualize visionary thoughts. When placed over our hearts, can these hands represent a renewed commitment to a social and cultural inclusiveness?
"I (We) Pledge Allegiance to the World, and to all Sentient Beings within…and to the Planet, for which We Share, One Vision, Interconnected, with Dignity, Shelter, Food and a Sustainable World Community for All."
Guantanamo PUblic Memory Project
Burton Barr Public Library
Artist Joan Baron, as Scribe creating ceramic memory shards as an interactive public installation.
“The responsibility of the scribe is to record people’s emotions, people’s questions, and people’s concerns.”In addition to working with Phoenix Public Library to host this traveling exhibit & produce a great schedule of public events, the team at Arizona State University also partnered with local artist Joan Baron.
“I was very excited about the opportunity to look at using art to communicate really important issues of our times, and to encourage conversation, debate, & seeking solutions.”
For the installation, Baron has been inscribing words & fragments of text that represent the many voices of the national dialogue that our exhibit has been fostering.
“Through the course of listening to hundreds of interviews and tapings, and reading newspaper reports… I just became deeper & deeper involved.”
Planned Parenthood Fundraiser
Joan created an insiprational piece to share with the next generation of "Nasty Women". Her collage showcases female leaders & inovaters; Jane Goodall, Michelle Obama, Katherine Johnson, Maya Angelo, Eleanor Roosevelt, Peona Chodron, Erma Pound, Marina Abromovic & Nelle Harper Lee.
More clay less PLastic
Change In Your Hand 2
Traveling Show - Maniago, Italy
"Quintetto per Sorseggiare"
The more I have learned about the damaging effects of plastic to our environment & ocean life, the more I find a deeper responsibility as an artist & urban horticulturist to create clay vessels for preparing & serving food. I build color & texture into my forms using multiple colored clays. Soda firing & wood firing deliver the rich surfaces to each piece. “Eating real food from real bowls” is my mantra. It addresses the importance of connecting to real people within a dynamic ecosystem… it’s about speaking to a reverence for this planet through the art making process.
“Quintetto per Sorseggiare (Quintet for Sipping)” speaks to the value in conversation, about thoughtful & contemplative wisdom as we sip slowly & intentionally together.
“Canyon Bowl” speaks to the beauty & timelessness of the Grand Canyon in particular. I have hiked there many times. To eat from a bowl carrying this energy is a reminder that we are stewards of this earth & polluting it is destructive.
“Abstract Bowl” speaks to the imperfect. There is no perfect, easy answer to our problems of plastic pollution. Clay bowls are purposeful because they offer a sustainable, user-friendly way for each individual to personally select their bowl. This very gesture empowers us. We instantly become part of the solution & we gain something beautiful & meaningful in the process.
Feast on the Street
Feast on the Street brings our community and friends together around a half-mile long dining table in downtown Phoenix, transforming First Street into a pedestrian promenade in celebration of food and art in the desert. This free public event is a community project initiated by the ASU Art Museum and the Desert Initiative. Joan Baron created over 300 place setting, each including a hand-made ceramic bowl filled with creosote & a place mat with information about edible desert plants.